View Full Version : Fire at Six Flags Haunted House
08-01-2008, 07:37 AM
Article says it was not open, but I hope we don't get fallout from it anyways.
08-01-2008, 09:11 AM
Based on what? Do you know more than the article told? You're assuming it was human error.
Yes I do know more - I had already read where it was an accident and caused by an electrical problem - it still does not lessen the fact that it is just another incident that draws undue attention to us all and increases the stigma placed on haunted attractions
08-01-2008, 05:54 PM
Well, be prepared for more grief from the building inspector and fire marshal in the future. The tragic Great Adventure fire of May 11, 1984 has hindered my ability to setup and open in the Philly, Pa. area like you wouldn't believe. That's why I'm gonna take a shot at a mobile (trailer) show.
08-01-2008, 07:32 PM
First: AW, can you locate that article you read, the one that mentioned the cause of the fire?
If the public is under the impression (whether it's actually true or not) that the fire was caused by electrical malfunction, then use the fact that *your* haunt, for example, has been certified/inspected/whatever by the regulating board of your area, to inspire trust and market your attraction.
It may be true that you do this each year anyway, because of local laws, but it will only boost your customers' trust in your haunt when you bring it to their attention.
Many businesses miss out on sales simply because they don't state the obvious.
08-01-2008, 07:34 PM
If y'all happen to see more news reports on this, would y'all send it to me or post it? I'd like to keep an eye on this.
Thanks. Hope to hear more from y'all. :)
08-01-2008, 11:30 PM
I never knew much about the details of the Great Adventure fire so I just googled it and read up on it. Amazing what they could get away with back then.
Interestingly, it was a trailer haunt that was supposed to be temporary and they decided to keep it.
08-02-2008, 01:21 AM
Posted this on the Fright Fourum:
It is alway ridiculous! How many apartment fires were there in the last month?
Do they shut down or change inspections of apartments though out the country?
If anyone makes a comment on this use this link:
Also in MD ON THE SAME DAY, a fire in the Marriot's unfinished mansion.
Do we shut down all mansions and require new inspections?
We should have all the facts to be able to be informed, but should avoid as much as possible. Here's what I mean....
This is where we need a real industy leader than can step forward and put a proper spin on this.
The only other major fire was in 1984...TWENTY FOUR YEARS AGO!!!
"In the last 24 years there have only been 2 major fires in Haunted Attractions. Only one caused any bodily harm. In those 24 years over 360 million people have visited haunted attractions. The proactive nature of the owners and operators of Haunted Attractions have made this industry one of the safest in the world."
THIS is what our industry needs, procative assessment! We need statics on other industries to have something to compare to. Had many injuries and deaths in other industries?
Here's some "spin doctoring" for you....They are building the next mega resort here in Vegas, City Center. According to reports, EIGHT people have died on the project. The point here being that actually SIXTEEN people have died, eight were transported to the hospital and died in route or at the hospital. Since they didn't actually die ON the property they don't count!!!!
Many Haunters are active in other fields. Maybe we independently start gathering this type of information in our other fields so we can compile a comparitive list.
I based my little quote on only 1,500 haunts nationwide with an average of 10,000 participants. In 24 years that's 360 million visitors. What if there are really closer to 2,000 or 5,000 haunts? Now we're talking over a BILLION participants!!
THIS is how we need to be proactive, not quaking in our boots waiting for the Fire Marshal to throw this latest incident in our faces!!
08-02-2008, 01:28 AM
That's a really good idea. The hard part is getting more than token coverage of a representative telling how safe haunts are and explaining why. Sensationalism sells, and the smoke and flames are what makes the news.
But it never hurts to make the effort. It will take someone who is ready to jump on it as soon as something happens and the story is still fresh.
I wonder what would happen if you compiled statistics for other types of fires and presented them to the fire inspector when they show up next time and mention the latest haunt fire. They might just think you're being a smart ass and do a tougher inspection.
08-03-2008, 07:06 AM
Shawn, you had mentioned in another post that you used to be a newspaper editor.
Do you think writing letters to the editor might get some ink?
08-03-2008, 04:26 PM
Letters to the Editor worked for P.T. Barnum and Houdini but who reads newspapers today?
I tend to think mostly elderly people still read newspapers.....
When was the last time a group of senior citizens arrived to pay to see your haunt?
I also think that letters to the editor must have some bone of contention to them, some discussion or argument, difference of opinion to generate some mental activity.
Barnum and Houdini's letters had this.
Barnum was protesting criticism about his display and owning of a very elderly black (slave) woman who claimed to have been George Washington's nanny, Houdini and his brother had a letter war saying how crappy each other's show was as they appeared across the street from one another, of course it was a secret they were brothers and the brother's act was Houdini's old act from the year before.
08-03-2008, 05:29 PM
A letter would most definitely get printed, since most editors and TV stations are always looking for some kind of local angle to all national or regional stories. It could lead to a follow-up article about your haunt, outlining the many safety features in place. It could make the front page closer to Halloween and you can't buy publicity like that.
Jim, it's true readership has dropped off drastically over the years. But most papers have online editions now, with letters to the editor a favorite part of them. Readers are allowed to post comments, making for some lively discussions. And the talk around the coffee shop and the beauty and barber shops is always what was in the paper recently. Kids might not read the paper but the parents will mention things like this to them, and something about a haunted house will catch their attention while politics won't.
There are other avenues as well. Most local TV and radio stations have news programs and would most likely consider something like this. A fire is always big news and the fact that it was in a haunted house is doubly interesting. A brief tour of your haunt demonstrating how safe it is for a TV station and an on-air interview with the news director at a radio station is again advertising that you couldn't buy. And most TV and radio stations have websites as well.
08-04-2008, 03:31 PM
Now I suppose we should locate some statistics to arm ourselves. Perhaps the IAAPA has numbers? I looked at their site very briefly, but all I saw were links offering stats on *rides*. Again, I didn't look very closely.
08-04-2008, 04:17 PM
Now what we need are statistics.
I wrote emails to both IAAPA and the National Safety Council to request info from them or places where I can get the info. We'll see what they say.
Thank you, Jim and Shawn, for your thoughtful responses. :)
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